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Best Practice Analyzers for Windows Servers / Exchange

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Please consider using Microsoft Best Practice Analysers as one of the first steps of troubleshooting before attempting anything else.

Why Best Practice Analysers?
It gives you a wealth of information along with possible misconfigurations in your system.  Rather than use the Best Practice Analyser tool to adhere to some "best practice", you can use it to document your present server configuration.
You do not have to solve every error / warning, it's possible that your server has been deliberately  configured against "best-practice".

But if you are facing slow outlook connection and Exchange Best Practice Analyser suggests a high user RPC activity - there's a possible connection there. You can use Best Practice Analysers to give you "troubleshooting vectors" and explore further along those steps.

Where do I get Best Practice Analysers?

Exchange Remote Connectivity Analyser
Run all tests - or tests pertaining to your problem.
https://www.testexchangeconnectivity.com/

Exchange Best Practice Analyser 2003 (run it from exchange server + another client machine)
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=dbab201f-4bee-4943-ac22-e2ddbd258df3&displaylang=en

- run a health check -

Exchange Best Practice Analyser 2007
Go to Toolbox on your Exchange Management Console.

Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant 2003 (message logs and troubleshooting)
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=4bdc1d6b-de34-4f1c-aeba-fed1256caf9a&displaylang=en

Exchange Troubleshooting Assistant 2007
Go to Toolbox on your Exchange Management Console.

Exchange Server User Monitor (really useful to detect RPC + what different outlook clients are using)
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=9a49c22e-e0c7-4b7c-acef-729d48af7bc9&displaylang=en

Small Business Server 2003 Best Practice Analyser
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=3874527a-de19-49bb-800f-352f3b6f2922&displaylang=en

Small Business Server 2008 Best Practice Analyser
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=86a1aa32-9814-484e-bd43-3e42aec7f731&displaylang=en

Best Practice Analysers in Server 2008

Open Server manager
Open Roles
Select role for which you want to open BPA.
In the details pane, open the Summary section, and then open the Best Practices Analyzer area.

=== Writing your own Best Practice Analyser ===

If you are considering writing your own analyzer's, you can use this general purpose engine here.
http://www.codeplex.com/wikipage?ProjectName=BPAEngine

Helpful links;

How to add rules
http://www.codeplex.com/wikipage?ProjectName=BPAEngine&title=How%20to%20Write%20a%20Rule%20for%20the%20Best%20Practices%20Analyzer

How to write plugins
http://www.codeplex.com/wikipage?ProjectName=BPAEngine&title=How%20to%20Write%20a%20Plugin%20for%20the%20Best%20Practices%20Analyzer
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Author:sunnyc7
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